Mathieu contract out of the way

Posted by Darren Urban on May 23, 2013 – 2:31 pm

There was some early concern about how the Cardinals would structure the contract of Tyrann Mathieu, given Mathieu’s issues. But it didn’t seem to make a big difference. The slot at which Mathieu was chosen was scheduled to get a $662,500 signing bonus — obviously guaranteed money — and instead the deal is broken down with a smaller signing bonus ($265,000, according to Albert Breer) and then roster bonuses of $99,000 in 2014, $102,000 in 2015, $154,000 in 2016 (according to Adam Schefter.)

Breer also said that extra bonus money is guaranteed for skill and injury, which is contract lingo meaning Mathieu would get the money even if he isn’t good enough to make the team those years. But it covers the Cardinals if Mathieu isn’t on the roster because of drugs, which sounds like a fair way to resolve what could have been a complicated issue. (Breer has those details here.)

The contract has standard rookie minimum salaries of $405,000 this season, $495,000 in 2014, $585,000 in 2015 and $675,000 in 2016.

(UPDATE: A couple of days later, here is a full analysis of how the bonus system is structured for Mathieu.)

Mathieu called getting the deal done “a walk in the park.” He smiled as he said it. He knows many are paying attention — while he was waiting for team president Michael Bidwill to arrive to sign the deal, he noted the news would probably blow up on social media — and he knows everyone is aware of his story. He prefers to be thinking about football and learning how to play safety. It was interesting, however, to hear him talk about how he feels obligated to not only the organization but the community now that he’s signed a deal. His well-being is going to be an ongoing storyline for as long as he plays with the Cards (and in the league for that matter) since one slip-up will generate news. So far, though, Mathieu has gone through a pretty routine rookie transition.

— On a somewhat related note, the Cardinals had $7.88 million of cap space prior to Mathieu signing. I’m not sure if his deal would put him among the top 51 contracts or not, which would be the only way it would impact the cap right now.


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17 Responses to “Mathieu contract out of the way”

  1. By SteveG on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    I am 23 yrs sober on 26th Sept..I hope that Tyrann has the good fortune to “make THE decision”..It is to not do “it” anymore..Not hoping, not wishing not wanting but “That’s it, I’m done”.

    It was an easy one for me, no major disasters (DUI or being kicked off of the port that I loved as examples) but just sick n’ tired of being sick n’ tired….I have seen others struggle so hard and fail far too often…It isn’t a “smart’ thing or a “\weak” thing..It IS a support and “seeing hope” thing tho..

    But whatever moved in me (and others I know) to make that decision to “not do that again” is such a relief..Hope he is there and I know many of us addicts who have been there done that but not lately are rooting for him too….

  2. By Cards4Ever on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    Good for this dude. You can hear echoes of Patrick Peterson in his statements, and that’s okay! He’s a ballhawk and WILL win us games!

    Also, Floyd is looking reeeeaaaall good in these videos! Two big stud wide receivers on the out side and two speedy dudes in the middle is going to combine for mucho touchdowns for Carson Palmer!

  3. By luke on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    7.8million.MAN you could still sign one mroe big name for 1 year.

  4. By joe holst on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    I don’t know who started the rumors of him not getting a guaranteed signing bonus but I would like to know.

  5. By Darren Urban on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    Joe —

    RE: Guarantees

    Peter King mentioned it in a MMQB column right after the draft.

  6. By Dynosoar on May 23, 2013 | Reply


    Congratulations! I’m with you, lets’ here Mathieu say in 2039 he’s been 26 (or 27) years addiction free. I hope you have a celebration planned on 9/26.

    I like what I hear from Mathieu. He sounds like his head is on straight and when I see him in photos, he looks happy. Second chances can do that.

  7. By kauaicardsfan on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    Aloha Darren,
    Just curious, I noticed that reporters like Adam and Albert gets some of breaking news before you do? How are they getting this information when I would think you would be the first to have all this information since you are the main reporter for the teams website?
    I think you should be the source for any team news before anyone else??

    Not sure how all this info gets out??

  8. By Darren Urban on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    Kauai —

    RE: Reporters

    They work their jobs too.

    In this case, the agent is giving out the info. Not the team.

  9. By shannon robinson on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    I under calculated him at 1.0 million this year which puts him at approximately number 29 in the salary ladder. Thanks for the cap update Darren – so Luke might be right, we could sign our remaining rookies and then ink Sedrick Ellis (for example) for maybe 2.0 million for one year and still have an emergency account remaining for injury replacement down the road (no jinx, not a prayer.) is excellent salary info. SteveG – well said.

  10. By tbru on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    I am one who thinks the NFL has too much power over non performance enhancing drug use. I like this contract, in a world with few guarantees. That is a decent chunk of change left on the table, that should be good incentive to play by the rules. Hearing Mathieu talk, I do think he has put his past behind him.

  11. By Pete Dowdle on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    Glad to see this guy’s chance finally being given to him in an official NFL contract. I know he has his detractors and nay-sayers out there, but he should be given this chance, period. He’s young; he made relatively minor mistakes compared to, say, that of Ray Lewis, Jamal Lewis, and Michael Vick; and he’s focused himself and worked hard to put himself into a position that has obviously warranted the chance to be granted unto him. In a year or two, after he’s forced a number of turnovers and people are talking about the latest amazing thing he did on the field instead of off the field, he’ll just be another household, playmaker-type name (instead of “Honeybadger,” I’m thinking we should all scream “Wolverine!” when he does something spectacular) that will only be remembered and respected by those who stood by him from his beginnings, from his goodness to badness to greatness.

  12. By Eazy E on May 23, 2013 | Reply

    Good for him. The no guaranteed money would never fly!(no pun intended)

  13. By Paul Liccardi on May 24, 2013 | Reply

    I think this was the perfect contract, I believe in everybody deserves a fair chance, expecially with talent like that.tyrann please take full advantage of this opportunity and put the past behind you, and be thankfull for having the talent and the opertunity to use it and to make lots of money, there are hundreds of millions of people that never get second chances and opportunities like this. with this coaching staff and pactrick petersons leadership and guidance I know you will do good things.

  14. By ored on May 24, 2013 | Reply

    i think he’s flying straigtht,walking the walk,now he just has to bring his talent to the nfl and i hope it translates at the next level,he still has an uphill battle.

  15. By sbrown on May 25, 2013 | Reply

    Ok now you have your second chance , please take advantage of everyone willing to help you and have a successful career and private family life. Mathieu does not want to be the “honey badger” any more, which is fine as he is moving on from that time in his life. I’m sure he will do something on the field to get himself a new nickname, lets hope it’s not from Wolfley 🙂

  16. By George Caswell on May 28, 2013 | Reply

    To watch the Cardinals play defense in 2013 is going to be fun. Peterson, Minter and Mathieu playing in the same defense will guarantee it. Before the draft I predicted that whichever team chose Tyran Mathieu would improve by 25% over last year. I’m standing by that!

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